LoveThe Glossary





























The GlossaryThis glossary is mainly in Malay i.e. Bahasa Malaysia. However, many food ingredients or terms are better known in local Chinese or Indian dialects. This is because of Malaysia's multi-ethnic population, and its culturally diverse cuisine and cooking styles. Certain ingredients are used exclusively, or more frequently in different ethnic kitchens, while some foods may be forbidden due to religious beliefs. Wherever possible, spelling variations, similar names in English, or in other countries nearby and afar, shall also be included in the glossary.


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Paddy. Unhusked Rice.




A local plant with long narrow, green leaves. The rich green leaves have a slightly sweet floral flavor, and deep green color of the leaves makes them a good natural food coloring. The aromatic leaves are used whole, or pounded to extract the juice. It is used most frequently in cakes, puddings, rice dishes and curries. Without it, some classic Malaysian dishes looses some of its authenticity in taste.

Daun Pandan : Screwpine Leaf.




Roast, To roast, Roasted. It can also refer to Grill, To Grill, Grilled.

Ayam Panggang : Roast Chicken.
Ikan Panggang : Grilled Fish



Fu Kwa [Chinese], Pavakkai [Tamil]

Bitter gourd.




Cooking Pot.


Perut Besar

Wai [Chinese], Thouthi [Tamil], Offal




Chow Tau [Chinese], Stink Bean, Twisted Cluster Bean, Peteh [Indonesia], Sataw, Sator [Thailand]

Parkia. It looks like a long twisted legume, usually sold in bunches. The beans inside are green in color and have a rather unusual smell. These beans are bitter in taste, but for those initiated, it is best cooked with other strong flavored ingredients such as chilies, belacan [dried shrimp paste], garlic and onions [Sambal Belacan].



Yim Sai [Chinese], Cilantro.

Parsley. The type of parsley commonly used are Chinese Parsley, also called Coriander Leaves.



Mooi Khow [Chinese], Ularthiya Palam [Tamil]




Kung Chew [Chinese], Poolor [Tamil]

Banana. There are several varieties of bananas available locally.

Pisang Emas : Hoong Moh Chew [Chinese], Emas [Tamil]
Pisang Embun : Hoong Ngah Chew [Chinese]
Pisang Hijau : Green Banana, also called Plantains. Cheng Ngah Chew [Chinese], Patchai Nadan [Tamil]
Pisang Raja : Lai-yar Chew [Chinese], Rajah [Tamil]
Pisang Rastali : Tah lee Chew [Chinese], Rastali [Tamil]


Popiah Skin

Rice Paper Skin, Rice Wrapper

A circular, white paper-thin skin made from a mixture of flour and salt water. This is used to wrap meat and vegetables such as Popiah [Stewed Vegetables Roll] or spring rolls [Popiah Chnee].


Pucuk Paku

Paku Choy [Chinese]

Fern Shoots.

e.g. Sabah Vegetable


Pak Loh Mai [Chinese], Poolor [Tamil]

Glutinous Rice. The white glutinous rice is used both whole or in powder form. Due to its high starch content, it is very filling and not eaten in large amounts like regular rice. Used for nasi kunyit [Turmeric rice], pulut inti [a Malay dessert] and chang [a Chinese rice snack].

Pulut Hitam : Black Glutinous Rice. Hak loh Mai [Chinese], Karuppu Poolar [Tamil].


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